Robert Peston, economics editor

Robert Peston Economics editor

Welcome to Peston's Picks - for my latest thoughts on the big economic events around the world making us richer or poorer

The growing threat to our recovery

2 September 2014
European Central Bank

I've returned from my short break to a world that looks pretty messy - and (very sorry) I am suffering from a degree of trepidation at the start of the new school term (and that's not just because of my beloved Arsenal's traditionally erratic start to the new season).

Let's start with a bit of cheery news: Japan is showing signs of breaking free from two decades of stagnation in pay; wages in July rose at their fastest pace for more than 17 years, and they have been increasing for five months.

Just maybe Japan's pernicious deflationary pressures are easing.

But that may be a new version of Japanese exceptionalism, because the same cannot be said of a far more important market for British firms - the eurozone, where deflationary pressures remain a concern.

The German and Italian economies are shrinking, and France is flat-lining (in case of interest, I am making a documentary about whether France can ever again afford "le good life").

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This column...

6 August 2014

This column may be a bit quiet for a bit, because I am away from the office.

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The 'time of my journalistic life'

So how tough was the great British depression for me?

Listen to my essay from this morning's Today programme:

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Farewell to the mother of all depressions

Brixton High Street

The British economy is now officially 0.2% bigger than it was at its last peak, in the first three months of 2008.

So, as I mentioned earlier this week, Britain's longest depression since serious record-keeping began is now officially over.

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Half a cheer for depression's end

Sunrise in the City of London

On Friday we will have - depending on how you look at it - either the most symbolically important or the most pointless economic event of recent times.

Namely, official confirmation that the depression caused by the mother of all banking and financial crises is finally over. UK output or GDP has finally exceeded its pre-recession peak (the technical definition of a depression is the period during which GDP remains below that peak).

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Why Coe is set to win BBC race

Lord Coe
Lord Coe led London's Olympics bid and chaired the organising committee for the games

Here are a couple of mildly interesting tidbits about my own shop, the BBC.

First (and there is nothing terribly revelatory about this) Lord Coe is a virtual shoo-in to be Lord Patten's successor as chairman of the BBC Trust.

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Modi's mountain to climb

Narendra Modi
Narendra Modi (centre)

On the eve of the Modi government's first budget, India is in the grip of infectious optimism.

Admittedly, doing the kind of job I do, I have been exposed to a limited cross-section of Indian society.

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How Gandhi became George Osborne's hero

Mahatma Gandhi

That Mahatma Gandhi will be commemorated with a statue in Parliament Square is perhaps extraordinary - given that he was the leader of the nationalist movement against British rule in India.

But the whole thrust of British diplomatic relations these days with India is to build bridges with the world's second most populous country - in large part because of the important opportunities that may become available for British businesses.

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How chancellor woos India

Hague and Osborne

I am currently running on two hours sleep and a mild vegetable curry I had for breakfast in my hotel.

So I feel considerably less full of vroom than the tractors and cars made by the Mumbai plant of the Mahindra Group, where I have been traipsing behind the chancellor as he tours the factory floor, in the atmospheric conditions of a Turkish bath.

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About Robert

Robert has won numerous awards for his journalism, including Journalist of the Year, Specialist Journalist of the Year and Scoop of the Year (twice) from the Royal Television Society, Performer of the Year from the Broadcasting Press Guild, and Broadcaster of the Year and Journalist of the Year from the Wincott Foundation.

Prior to joining the BBC, he was political editor and financial editor of the Financial Times, City Editor of the Sunday Telegraph and a columnist for the New Statesman and Sunday Times.

He broadcast and published a series of influential reports about the causes and consequences of the global financial crisis.

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